Scratching Sounds

I don’t want a cat
that’s not loyal
not affectionate
always

I put out
the rat poison, but
I’m looking at
a vein, and
death seems so pleasant
next to
the dead mice
in my refrigerator,
a leaky cold box
that’s been
peaking my
electric bill

I don’t want a cat
who knows not
how a couple
of humans love

Purrs don’t
fool
loneliness

Mice carried
green pellets of rat poison
into my oven

But purrs don’t
claw out
loneliness

A mouse hopped
in spasms
across my carpet

It looked at me
flipped on its back
and died

I don’t want a cat.

I can’t afford a dog, and
no woman would want
a dog like me

I’ve never liked
green food

I don’t want a cat.

Rat poison
they dye green
for distinction, but

I’m not fooled —
every dog has
his green meal day

I don’t want a cat.
—- Douglas Gilbert
(Henry Le Châtelier)

Poetry Books By Douglas Gilbert